“Technologists don't see problems as obstacles to avoid,” writes Creating IT Futures CEO Charles Eaton in his award-winning book, “How to Launch Your Teen's Career in Technology: A Parent’s Guide to the T in STEM Education.”
“[Technologists] consider problems opportunities for solutions. Their innate curiosity leads them to confront challenges even when they're not obvious,” Eaton explains.
In this Podcast Flashback to an episode from a series of podcasts about the “5 Traits of a Technologist,” Eaton tells host R.C. “Bob” Dirkes that a Ph.D. in Robotics isn’t required to work with Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems that control many of today’s machines and software programs.
“The skill set that's needed is like a dog trainer,” he elaborates. “You're really feeding it information and repetition and you're trying to make sure that the machine is understanding what its ultimate job is. So, if it's about [recognizing] a cat from a whole bunch of pictures… you're training [AI] like you would a dog to recognize a cat.”
The secret to successfully handling AI for businesses, and society at large, says Eaton, is less about education and more about exercising innate curiosity and a passion for solving problems.
“Some problems are really, really hard and we shouldn't give up when we can't find an immediate solution. That level of curiosity has to be sustained,” he says.
One problem confronting today’s business world: In the U.S. job market, as many as half a million positions working with technology at organizations of all kinds across the spectrum of industries go unfilled during any given quarter.
Business analysts call this continuing employment crisis the “tech skills gap.” In simple terms, there’s an abundance of job vacancies and a shortage of qualified applicants to work with AI and other emerging technologies.
Eaton believes that teenagers – i.e., young people who today are in their middle and high school years – are the generation that ultimately can close this skills gap. That is if we – parents and other mentors to these teens – can inspire them to start pursuing tech careers now. He calls this mission “nurturing the next generation of technologists,” which he articulates for parents and teens in his book and illuminates for listeners through his podcast, Technologist Talk with Charles Eaton.
Click here to listen to this Podcast Flashback, just in case you missed the episode first time around.
Related Posts from Creating IT Futures
- What ARE Soft Skills? And Are They Really That Important? (blog post)
- Understanding Emerging Technology: Artificial Intelligence (CompTIA market overview)
- Artificial Intelligence (CompTIA resource page)
- Heads up to parents: Half a million tech jobs are waiting for employees (blog post)
- Charles Eaton, CEO of Creating IT Futures, earns International Latino Book Award for “How to Launch Your Teen’s Career in Technology: A Parent’s Guide to the T in STEM Education.” (blog post)